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Why should you make your own flower fertilizer? Some people will wonder if they read the headline of this article. Other people will not even ask that, they've been switching to slow-acting organic fertilizers for some time, which are good for plants and soil.
But even for (balcony) gardeners who do not want to fiddle with various organic material, it may be useful to make their own flower fertilizer.
What does a flower fertilizer actually contain?
If you want to make your own flower fertilizer, the most important requirement is that you know what a flower fertilizer actually contains. If you know that, you can buy finished fertilizers and mix them to your liking (or, for scientists, mix the chemicals). You can also look up a whole range of household or garden waste on the Internet to see if they contain nutrients that will benefit the plants.
All fertilizers supply the plants with the same substances. Because even if some miraculous fertilizers let us assume otherwise, plants need only nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, in addition to the substances that they absorb via the air. There are also very small amounts of calcium, magnesium, iron, sulfur and trace elements.
Ingredients of a complete plant fertilizer
The normal commercial fertilizer provides these ingredients in chemically suitable form. Each mineral full plant fertilizer contains nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium as its core components. "N" is the chemical symbol for nitrogen, "P" for phosphorus and "K" for potassium, so these fertilizers are also called NPK fertilizers, and in this order the concentration of these components is also given in percentages.
- NPK 7-4-6 is therefore a fertilizer with 7% nitrogen, 4% phosphorus and 6% potassium.
- Nitrogen is especially important for growth, for the formation of plant matter.
- Phosphorus helps to form flowers and fruits.
- Potassium needs the plants in order to feel well and to develop a good resistance.
Commercially available dosages
NPK 7-3-6, 15-5-20, 14-8-20 or 7-4-10 are common mixtures for green crop fertilizers, although the numbers also say something about the dosage and the price-performance ratio. The third fertilizer mentioned above is exactly twice as strong as the fourth, so it has to be dosed half as much and can also cost twice as much as the fourth. Common flowering fertilizers contain more phosphorus, read numbers like 6-8-7, 7-8-6, 5-7-7 or 8-8-8.
In a commercially grown plant has usually been explored, whether 7-3-6 arrives better than 7-4-10, in the plant for the hobby need, there are such studies usually not, the optimal nutrient ratio is more likely to be determined by trial and error (and Of course, it also depends on the ground). The "normal" plant is properly nourished with any "normal" solid fertilizer, but there are a lot of plants whose slightly different needs are known.
Flowering plants can be satisfied with a harmonious nutrient ratio, but some come to flower better with an increased phosphorus content. Pure green plants handle well with a reduced phosphorus content, they do not form flowers. The potassium content is equally important to everyone, it should be about the same as the concentration of the most abundant nutrient.
Conifers are known to need a lot of magnesium compared to other plants, which is responsible for the green coloration of the needles. Cacti thrive best with a fertilizer that has a significantly lower nitrogen content compared to phosphorus, about 5-8-6 would be a good mix - with the way many Bonsai get along well. And all flowering plants like this fertilizer with high phosphorus content, of course, too.
Make liquid fertilizer yourself
So, if you want to fertilize special plants with a special need, you can start by making the best mixture from purchased fertilizer. If you For example, if you have a fertilizer at home that contains little phosphorus but needs more phosphorus fertilizer, you could buy a bottle of phosphorus fertilizer and mix it with your fertilizer.
Also, the pH can be easily changed, that is z. B.necessary if a fertilizer has a pH higher than 4 or 5, but it should be used on plants kept in pots and like a slightly acidic soil (azaleas for example). For these plants, the fertilizer with pH 4 can only be used if you give the fertilizer a good shot of salad vinegar. You can determine the mixing ratio, as well as the pH of the fertilizer, using a cheap test strip from the pharmacy. Incidentally, normal liquid fertilizers usually have a pH between 4 and 5.
Make organic flower fertilizer yourself
But you can also rely on organic fertilizers, ie fertilizers with components from nature, where the nutrients must first be developed by soil microorganisms before the plants can benefit. Such fertilization is consumed at a slower pace, so the risk of overdosage is by no means as high as with fertilization with a synthetically produced powerhouse.
A stinging nettle is z. B. a balanced nitrogen fertilizer, or fresh cow dung with some straw. It contains all the nutrients in a composition that is suitable for nutrient-requiring plants. Compost is also a good fertilizer, depending on the composted material but with different content. If only plant material has been composted, supplementation with nitrogenous substances such as animal manure or horn shavings is recommended.
There are still many residues that contain ingredients that the plants like:
- Bananas (bowls) are quite potassium rich, magnesium is also included.
- In the coffee grounds are nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and minerals, actually coffee grounds is a complete fertilizer.
- The ashes of untreated wood can also be used, it is a good organic potassium fertilizer, but not for plants that rather have a low ph value because the ashes are highly alkaline.